Issues dealing with COVID-19 and the vaccines are occurring quickly. According to writings from the guest on this Crosstalk, France passed a measure for vaccine passes that must be shown to visit public venues. Italy has mandatory COVID vaccines for people over 50 with few exceptions. Austria is set to enact mandatory vaccinations on February 1 for anyone over 14. Those who refuse face a fine or jail time if unable to pay. Germany is soon voting on a near universal mandate. Greece has announced mandatory vaccines for all citizens over 60. It’s also been reported in Quebec, Canada, that the premier has announced that his province will implement monetary penalties in the form of health contributions for unvaccinated citizens. Other steps are being taken in nations such as Australia, New Zealand and China.
Joining Jim for a closer look at the latest surrounding COVID-19 was Veronika Kyrylenko (Kare-uh-lenk-oh). Veronika is a contributor to the New American magazine. She’s a research associate at a defense consulting firm (GeoStrategic Analysis) located in Arlington, VA. She has contributed commentary on various international and domestic political topics for the last 8 years. Her work has appeared in the Western Journal, American Thinker, The Hill and other publications. She holds a Ph.D in Political Science.
This program expanded upon a news story that was just breaking as the broadcast began. It’s been reported that the Supreme Court issued mixed rulings in a pair of cases challenging the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandates. In one case, the president has the authority to mandate any facilities that obtain federal Medicare or Medicaid funding. In another case, the COVID mandate for businesses with 100 or more employees was blocked.
Veronika brought her perspective on a number of points related to these cases. For example:
–Veronika believes the ability to have mandates continue for healthcare facilities means there could be sad consequences for small medical facilities and rural areas where the hospitals have few employees.
–In California, they’re trying to get back COVID-positive healthcare workers and have them work in the COVID wings rather than bringing back those who don’t have COVID but haven’t been vaccinated.
–Some nations have rolled out a fourth COVID-19 vaccine while also shortening the interval between the initial vaccinations and the boosters.
–The Washington State Board of Health has proposed forcibly isolating and quarantining COVID-positive individuals or groups or even those merely suspected of being infected.
Greater details on these and other COVID-related news items, and how listeners responded, can be heard by reviewing this edition of Crosstalk.